Enjoying the Journey

Posts Tagged ‘Joy’

How to Be Happy In An Unhappy World

My favorite book of the Bible is the little New Testament book of Philippians. I love it for many reasons, but most of all, because it is a book of joy. Repeatedly we are told to “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice” (Philippians 4:4). God not only commands us to rejoice, He shows us the way. I believe the Lord intended for us to enjoy the journey. One of Christ’s favorite words was “blessed” or superlatively happy. In His closing words to His disciples He gave them instructions and said, “Happy are ye if ye do them” (John 13:17). How can you be happy in an unhappy world? Stop trying to be happy. Have you ever…

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August Resource: FREE Audio Recording Downloads!

This months resource is one of my favorites. In fact, it is my favorite book of the Bible! One of my instructors in college said that his favorite book of the Bible was the one he was reading at the time. Without doubt, all Scripture is wonderful. But many years ago I was challenged to adopt a “life book” and immerse myself in it. That book became the little New Testament letter of Philippians. I love this book for many reasons. Its theme is Jesus, and the joy that He alone can bring. It was the truth behind the name of our blog – Enjoying the Journey. It is the prayer of my life, that God would allow me to…

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Daily Thanksgiving (Daily Living – Part 3)

I love Thanksgiving. (And, yes, I know this is not November!) For too many of us thanksgiving is a day of the year instead of a way of life. We have established a tradition without applying the truth. God never meant us to give thanks from time to time. He blesses us every day. This is why David wrote, “Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah” (Psalm 68:19). Daily benefits deserve daily blessing. Notice that the “blessing” mentioned here is not the Lord blessing us, but us blessing Him. His blessings upon us are constant. It is our blessing and praising of His name that seems to waver. He continues…

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Happy Homes

One of the most wonderful gifts that my parents gave to me growing up was a happy home.  Yes, they had rules.  No, we did not get to do whatever we wanted to do.  But there was never the sense that we were “missing out.”  After all of these years it is the joy of the Lord that I witnessed in my parent’s lives that has stayed with me. Many years ago Pastor Sexton preached a message titled “Living on the Sunny Side of Life.”  One statement that he made seems especially appropriate today: “Don’t just live on the right side – live on the bright side.”  Christ has designed it so that we can have both! One of the…

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The Most Important Work I Have to Do Every Day

If your days are like mine they often resemble a whirlwind of people and tasks.  Correspondence.  Problems.  Phone calls.  Appointments.  Projects.  Meetings.  Decisions.  Life can become very crowded at times!  Many times at the end of a very busy day I have pulled into my driveway and been reminded by the Holy Spirit that I still had “home work” to do.  Indeed the work we do in our families is more important than the varied work that so often consumes our lives. What is the most important work you do every day? I believe that the most important work that I have to do every day of my life is not done while I am “at work.”  It is not…

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Don’t Lose Your Joy!

This world is full of joy stealers.  Behind them all is a miserable devil whose only delight is to “steal, kill, and destroy.”  It is a rare and refreshing thing to meet someone whose mission is to bring the joy of Jesus into other lives.  Paul was such a man.  In one of the most difficult letters he ever wrote we read these touching words: “Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand” (2 Corinthians 1:24). Joy is rooted in personal faith in God.  Each of us must believe the Lord for ourselves and in so doing discover the joy that only He can bring.  Yet in the…

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A Trip to Mayberry

We have just returned from a couple of days away with the family.  Travels took us to the real “Mayberry” – Mount Airy, North Carolina.  The kids – and their daddy! – have watched every episode of The Andy Griffith Show several times through the years.  This trip, like the show, was a throw back to simpler days and quieter lives.   Riding in Barney’s patrol car and eating at “The Snappy Lunch” have a way of slowing your pace and lightening your heart.  (The pork chop sandwich doesn’t hurt either.)  It was a joy to laugh and just be together.  No, they don’t make shows like Andy Griffith anymore.  But the love for simple things and the enjoyment of life is a…

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Joy in the Midst of Conflict

Lester Roloff used to sing an old gospel song that said, “It’s a battlefield brother, not a recreation room.  It’s a fight and not a game!  So run if you want to, run if you will.  But I came here to stay!”  Our generation would much rather have a recreation room.  Give us the games, because there is little fight in us! The problem with this, of course, is that the fight doesn’t go away because we hunker down in the trenches.  Our adversary keeps shooting his fiery darts.  Casualties are falling all around.  We have ignored the spiritual conflict, but it is hotter than it has ever been. A few days ago I sat in a coffee shop with…

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My First Sermon and What I am Now Learning From It

On a Thursday night in July of 1989 God made clear to me that He wanted me to be a preacher.  I was 12 years old and full of fear about the future.  Today I am more grateful to God than ever to be in the ministry. My first sermon behind a pulpit was given on Sunday, August 27, 1989.  Several young preachers were speaking in an afternoon youth rally.  My sermon was a simple one, taken no doubt from something that I had read or heard from someone else!  “I Have a Secret” was the title.  The Scripture I chose was the story of Paul pleading the case of Onesimus to Philemon.  It is the story of a man…

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Your Countenance Matters

I was walking across the parking lot.  I did not see anyone watching me and was deeply engrossed in some meaningless thought.  Then I heard him say,  “Why are you grimacing?” Grimacing?   Me?  Was I grimacing?  Perhaps, or perhaps my friend could not see my expression well.  Either way we had a good laugh and went our separate directions.  But the question stayed with me. Your countenance matters.  Others are reading our expressions and drawing conclusions.  The conclusions they draw may not reflect poorly on us alone; they may reflect poorly on the God of all joy that resides within us. Yes, your countenance matters.  Ask Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah.  It separated them from everyone else (Daniel 1:13-15).…

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